Psychologist: He’s in hell at the moment

2013-02-16 00:00

“SOBBING like that is [a sign of] absolute emotional shock. His whole world collapsed in the blink of an eye. It’s not about choosing sides. He needs emotional support so he can find his feet again.”

This was Pretoria sports psychologist Maretha Claasen’s warning after Oscar Pistorius’s breakdown in the dock yesterday. She said he must be closely watched, because a person in his position could be so overwhelmed they might consider suicide.

“He is in emotional hell, experiencing a mixture of shock, fear, anxiety and disbelief,” she said.

“He’s probably asking himself, ‘Who the hell am I and what have I done?’”

Claasen warned that people shouldn’t jump to conclusions about the personalities of elite athletes.

Research about aggression in sports had not shown conclusively that top athletes were more aggressive than other people, she added.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.